RE: Numerics

From: Glenn Morton <>
Date: Sun Jun 05 2005 - 18:13:14 EDT

>I can't give definitive answers to the many (and reasonable) questions you
raise, but
>I'll do my best to answer what I can.  I trust that you appreciate I am
>claiming that Vernon's patterns are "proof" of anything - just coming at it
as an
>observed phenomenon that could do with explaining.  I _certainly_ don't
think it can
>be used as evidence to support the YEC position (neither do AiG as far as I

In my opinion until we can know the probability distribution one can't use
this as evidence of design at all. One needs to know how may secular books
exhibit such things. And, is it just certain phrases and sentences that such
a thing can happen?

>Doesn't matter (in the case of Vernon's 2701 total).  The vowels were never
>numerical values as they were (as I understand) only added later as
pointing.  The
>numerical values were always based on the 22 letter consonant alphabet.

Aleph "a" is given the value of 1 in Vernon's scheme. And since it is the
primordial vowel and the points use it to tell pronounciation (see, I guess I am a bit confused
about the use of vowels. If A isn't a vowel, what is it?

>  Should we dismiss it out of hand right at the start because we know there
>alternative texts?  Is this a clear basis for saying that the evidence
(patterns) are
>not even worth looking at?

No, but, how does one know he has the original rather than a
Pythagoreanistically manufactured text?

>>>>>Yes, that is a possible explanation.  Again I only have a partial
answer.  When I've seen examples  of people doing this deliberately (it was
very popular in the 18th Century),  what one got were extremely contrived
examples that were worthless as literature, and the only intrinsic interest
was the numerical constraint.  Here's one of my favourite pieces of doggerel
that I saw in Martin Gardner's column in Sci. American, the number of
letters in each word giving the corresponding digit of pi:

Now I, even I would celebrate
In rhymes unapt the great
Immortal Syracusan rivaled nevermore
Who in his wondrous lore
Passed on before
Left men his guidance
How to circles mensurate.

I think you'd agree that it's drivel even if it gives 30 decimal places of
pi.  Look at the ridiculous split infinitive at the end  "To circles
mensurate", for instance.<<<<

Yeah, but given that pie is irrational, one would expect the linguistics to
go along with it to be strained. For the claim type of geometric numbers
Vernon is getting, isn't it going to be easier to get 2701 rather than

>>>Well, I agree.  One should not rule out the miraculous!  On the other
hand one shouldn't rule out immediately a naturalistic explanation.  It
*could* be deliberate human contrivance - though I don't think it likely for
the reasons above.  It *could* be coincidence -  I don't personally think so
but the estimation of probabilities is a difficult thing to do, and there is
the danger of saying "this pattern has probability X which is very low" when
there could be many other interesting patterns and when all are taken into
account the probability of getting any interesting pattern is not that
spectacular.  Again, no definitive answer to this, but the answer probably
lies in Kolmogorov complexity theory - compact representations of data and
so forth.<<<<

I have to ask about this last sentence. You could take the Hebrew text and
use winzip to compress it to what is presumably closer to the most compact
form for the information it possesses. But if you did that, the numerology
would be ruined. I strongly suspect that if you converted the sequence into
a numeric sequence you could further compress it with complexity. Maybe I
don't understand your point.

>I think I'm pretty much in agreement with all that.  Though maybe I'd say
the geometries are _evidence_ for design,
>but not _proof_ of it.  Then it's a question of saying how strong the
evidence is.

See, that is what struck me when you said you were amazed at the geometries.
Nothing is proof of design, such a proof does not exist even for a stone
tool. But while most here would reject this all out of hand because there
is no felt need for God to have manipulated physical reality and or
communicated something real about reality to us. I am not of that opinion,
because we can't believe our religion in a vacuum. There are other
contenders out there for the title of TRUE RELIGION. If we start with the
proposition that our religion is true and work from there, we have a perfect
tautological situation with no need for external verification. But we also
have the perfect analogy to YECism where they believe that their views are
true and correct and thus they need no data from the external world to know
that they are right.

>Glenn, how is your wife now?  I'll continue to pray.

Thanks for asking. M.D. Anderson has agreed to take her case--can't ask for
much better than that. We have an appointment with the surgeon on Thursday.
When we were speaking with the diagnosing doctor, I asked the question of
what we could do if MD Anderson said no. My wife chided me for lack of
faith and not taking the prayers of her friends into account. I was just
doing what I do for a living--manage projects and plan for all
eventualities. My wife was right in this case for sure.
Received on Sun Jun 5 18:15:11 2005

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